Associated British Ports (ABP) is the UK’s leading ports operator with 21 ports and boasts the UK’s leading export port for agricultural products at Ipswich. In the latest of our regular features, ABP’s East Coast Divisional Port Manager – Paul Ager – comments on the recent shooting of a protected bird.
In 2011, a purpose-built nesting box was installed into The Mill on Ipswich Waterfront to encourage Peregrine falcons. The Falcon’s main diet is pigeons caught on the wing and this meant that the proposed introduction was encouraged by businesses along the Waterfront, which see the huge number of feral pigeons in the area as a pest. In May 2016, the project was deemed a success; when five chicks were born.
However, last month Police received a call stating that a Peregrine falcon had been found shot. The young male was still alive when initially found, but died before he could be treated for his injury. It is believed he starved to death because he was unable to hunt after being shot in the leg. The Falcon was taken to the Riversbrook vets’ practice in Cliff Lane, but despite every effort, the vet was unable to save the bird. The incident was reported to the police because Peregrines have the maximum protection under the Wildlife and Countryside Act.
“We have sponsored the live streaming of the Peregrine falcons nesting at the top of the Mill building in Ipswich” said ABP’s Paul Ager. “We have provided the equipment and software to bring these fantastic views of nature in an urban environment going on above our doorstep. Naturally we were extremely disappointed to hear of the recent shooting”.
As at the time of print, the Police are no closer to apprehending the culprit(s) and all parties are hoping that continued publicity will result in someone having information and/or possible CCTV footage in the area.
Both Waterfront Life and ABP feel passionately about this matter and they are offering a combined reward of £250.00 for information leading to a successful conviction. If anyone has any information whatsoever, then they should contact Suffolk Police on 101 or Waterfront Life’s office on 01473 353512.